Well, yours truly is taking a break from the beautiful weather down here in Puerto Vallarta for a trip to the windy city for the Strictly Sail Chicago boatshow starting tomorrow and running through the weekend. If any of our friends or alumni are in the area, swing by our booth and say hi!
Yep, another tough weekend down here in Mexico. Josh and Drew got released from the J World salt mines last weekend and went off to play in the local Capri 37 fleet… they’ve got a handful of them down here, and they hit the water monthly with highly competitive one-design racing. Josh issued this report today:
This weekend saw a fleet of five boats turn out for two days of racing. On the first day, the fleet saw conditions ranging from 8-10 knots for race number one, picking up to around 14 knots for the second race, then slowly dying for the third race of the day. These changes in pressure were also accompanied with some major shifts, keeping the fleet on their toes and constantly trying to find the favored side of the course for that extra edge.
Drew and I were on board with Team Azteca to help fill spots at the mast, mainsail and tactics. For the first race, we found ourselves in good position on the starting line with good speed and were able to hold on to the lead for a 1st place finish. For race two, we climbed back from a bad start to battle it out with Crew Dos and Dreadnought, and managed to pull off second. Race three saw the whole fleet getting a solid start. A left shift favored us and Crew Dos, and we managed to prevail over them after the run for another win.
On day two, the fleet saw slightly more breeze. Race four started in around 12 knots of breeze at around 230 degrees. Throughout the race the breeze clocked to around 240, favoring the right side of the course. At the end of the race Azteca finished first with a Dreadnought and Crew Dos in a heavy fight for second, in which Crew Dos was victorious. As race five started, the wind started to climb and the fleet found themselves in 20 knots of breeze and carnage started to appear on the course. Dreadnought pulled the bullet, Chivas second, and we wrapped the weekend with a third.
The weekend was full of close competition and challenging conditions making a great weekend of racing. A big thanks to the guys aboard Azteca for having a couple of J World gringos along for the race!
And thank you for the report, Josh! Lots of great sailing going on around here right now: Our Learn-to-Sail classes are running almost continually at our Puerto Vallarta Sailing Center, and there are lots of sailing charters to boot.
Our San Francisco Sailing School is starting to book springtime courses, so don’t be left on the dock, give us a call now!
All the best,
Wayne Zittel and the J World Team
So if the winter blues have got an icy grip on your racers heart, we have the cure. March in Mexico. Big boats or small boats, offshore or buoy racing… you choose:
#1 Big Boat Offshore Yacht Racing – Hula Girl is racing to Cabo! Three J/World coaches plus six lucky crew are going to be racing the legendary turboed Santa Cruz 50+ in the Newport to Cabo 2011 Yacht Race. This true West Coast classic is shaping up to be a fantastic event this go-around… just check out the list of entries so far! We have only two berths available…
#2 Small Keelboats Around the Buoys – The J/World annual Banderas Bay Clinic and Regatta in our 26 foot J/80s has only one space left! This is one of our most popular offerings at our Puerto Vallarta base, and for good reason. We start with a three day clinic aboard our J/80s, with an impressive 3:1 student to instructor ratio. Everyone gets lavished with personal attention, and rotates thru all the positions on the boat. Then Wed. is a lay-day (skipper’s meeting, for anyone who wants to go), then Thurs-Sat we participate in the Banderas Bay Regatta with coaches aboard to insure that it is a positive and learning experience.
Ok, as I mentioned above, there are only a couple of berths available in these events. So if you are considering either one, I would highly suggest you get in touch with us soon. You see, we’ll be at the Strictly Sail Boatshow in Chicago later this month…
I got a report that there was a high of something like 17° and snowing in Chicago over the weekend. Meanwhile it’s 78° in Puerto Vallarta at our Puerto Vallarta Sailing Center. You think it’s gonna be a tough sell in Chicago? Like I said, probably a good idea to get in touch with us now…
Ok, that’s it for now…
For those of you who don’t frequent the lands south of the border, it is hard to describe the great diversity that you can stumble across in such a small area as Banderas Bay. This morning I read the account of a day in the life of cruising in Mexico by Latitude 38’s Wanderer, and was struck with what a great job he did at characterizing the overall feel of the area and community that we are so fortunate to be a part of. Then last night our friend Rita (faithful followers will know her as one of the lovely ladies who graced our crew in the cover shot of our J/120 in the 2008 Baja-Ha-Ha) was getting ready to head back to the wintry north, and she showed us some of her beautiful photos snapped during her stay in Vallarta. She got a ton of fantastic shots, so I figured it would be fun to share some… this isn’t as much about the sailing here (we report on that all the time), but just a bit of local color.
First up: Bucerias. This smaller town just to the north of PV hosts a fantastic mix of local flavor and tourist attractions…
And when you have explored a bit and worked up an appetite, there are all manners of restaurants in the area… from the most awesome tacos on the street, to sports bars blaring NFL and NHL, to fancy dining with fabulous wines…
Next we are off to Sayulita, the little beach town over the hill to the north. The highway from PV drops down to a two lane jungle road, and after a beautiful trip thru lush greenery, you stumble across a couple of gems. Sayulita is more popular than ever and has been bustling with travelers (and for good reason), while San Pancho / San Francisco just up the road a bit is still a lot sleepier, so you choose your flavor!
say hi to our friend Greg and sit out on the beautiful patio for a memorable dinner and experience… don’t miss it!
Banderas Bay is defined on the northern boundary by the beautiful Punta Mita. At the base of this point is the town of La Cruz and a new marina, complete with fuel dock and boatyard. And, like the rest of the area, the whole point has a huge amount to offer…
Back ashore in La Cruz now…
All the best,
Wayne Zittel and the J World Team
Ok, those of you waiting expectedly for news of the venue selection for the 34th America’s Cup to be held in 2013 probably already know this, but for the rest of you: we are excited that San Francisco has been officially named as the host of the next America’s Cup!
This is great news for sailing, and for San Francisco. Not only are the benefits to the sailing scene and community in general positive, but the lasting results are tremendous. I was living in San Diego during the years that it hosted the AC, and can vouch firsthand for what it did for businesses and sailors of all sorts… and the SD waterfront was forever positively changed… the cup campaigns invested a huge amount there, and left a lasting legacy.
I personally don’t think that the AC has traditionally put the best face on the sport of sailboat racing to the general public. Rather than being indicative of the sport in general, it is better to look at it as a truly spectacular representation of a microcosm within our sport. Bleeding edge, and elite to be sure. But because of the awesome spectacle it presents on so many fronts, it opens a dialog and draws attention to sailing, and gives us (sailors of all types) the opportunity to introduce all facets of sailing, cruising, and racing to new audiences.